Last week, the Woodland Pulp, St. Croix Tissue and St. Croix Chipping facility were privileged to host a Forests of Maine Teachers’ Tour visit. The group received an overview of the facility, the current challenges facing the industry in Maine and ways the industry is innovating to be sustainable in the future. Afterward, the group was able to tour the tissue making facility and ask questions of our team.

A program of the Maine TREE Foundation, since 1997, the Forests of Maine Teachers’ Tours have provided an immersive professional development program for Maine educators. This four-day tour focuses on the growth, harvest, and processing of wood products in Maine. Classroom Teachers, Girl and Boy Scout leaders, and conservation organization staff come together to learn about Maine’s forest resources from professionals working in the woods. The program provides 30 contact hours towards teacher certification renewal. The tours equip participants with innovative teaching approaches to share knowledge about the forest with students, colleagues, and communities. Throughout the program, participants engage in Project Learning Tree activities, meet professionals working in the Maine woods, and develop ideas on bringing the forest to the classroom or the classroom to the forest.

Woodland Pulp & St. Croix Chipping have a longstanding history at this site and are owned by the same parent company. St. Croix Tissue, also owned by the same parent company, is a state-of-the-art tissue paper manufacturing company that started up in 2016. St. Croix Chipping is a state-of-the-art chip mill controlled by modern day PLC controls. The mill chips 85 to 100 loads of tree length wood every day that are used by Woodland Pulp. In turn, the pulp mill produces St. Croix Hardwood, a premium Northern ECF bleached Kraft pulp manufactured using hardwood chips from Maine and New Brunswick, Canada with an annual capacity of 400,000 tons. This pulp is sold to paper makers all over the world and St. Croix Tissue consumes a portion of this pulp. St. Croix Tissue has a manufacturing capacity of 120,000 tons of tissue per year. Combined, the three mills are the largest employer in Washington County.